Before the Collectabed study was ready for testing Richard gave me a very interesting piece of information and it spurred me to send Richard ten individual sections of one foot long collectabed cardboard/panel sections. The construction was slightly different than the Collectabed proper but the materials, overall design, and function were identical. I called these one foot sections the Collectabed Mini.
The Collectabed Mini monitors sat in a box in Richard’s lab for a few weeks before he was ready to test them. When he did open them he found a rogue escapee bed bug from his lab had already found one. The experiment had not even started yet and already they were already looking promising.
Richard set up two arenas similar to the Collectabed apparatus described in the last post and installed a Collectabed Mini in each. The monitor was set on top of the bed frame and under the mattress with open cardboard corrugations exposed on the outside edge for the bugs to find. Bed bugs were released on the floor of the arena in folded paper harbourage and day/night light cycles were introduced as well as C02 during the dark phase. The following is Richard’s evaluation:
“The single monitors caught 60 – 75% of the bugs in the arenas. The majority found their way into the monitor within the first few days, so I wondered if the monitors would eventually catch everything if given enough time. However, this did not seem to be the case. After the first week very little changed……..” I ran the BB passive (BB Alert) in a parallel trial to see how it compared to your monitor. Each time I checked the monitor there were between 2 and 4 bugs in there (compared to 20 or so in yours) so the difference was considerable………. It seems to me that your monitor will easily beat anything I have previously tested. As well as being more attractive to bugs, it is considerably easier to check than any other designs based on corrugated card.”
I have used these monitors in the field for the last 18 months (we have about 2000 units out in the field with two per bed being the ideal) and it appears the field observations and lab trials match. In one particular case I was involved in a senior’s complex with a serious infestation in one suite – the bugs were dripping off the box spring. We heat sterilized the bed and all stuffed furniture, chemically treated the suite, installed climb up interceptors to isolate the bed and placed 4 Collectabed Mini monitors between the box spring and mattress at the head of a queen sized bed. The tenant did not cooperate and left his blanket draping on the floor rendering the heat sterilization useless. The maintenance staff noticed a number of bed bugs in the blankets and sheets during preparation for second treatment but did not count them so I don’t know how many there were. When I inspected the Collectabed Minis I found 25 bugs. I carefully went through the bed chemically and found 4 additional bugs. Therefore I concluded that 4 collectabed mini’s lined up at the head of the bed performed about the same as Richard’s lab experiment. The Collectabed mini, while highly effective as a monitor, could not get all the bugs.
I don’t think I would have thought of the Collectabed Mini without Richard’s collaboration. So I decided that the plans for this device be made freely available to homeowners and small business owners for personal use. If you make a few you can include Richard in the thanks. For commercial sales I would appreciate you contact my website for sales. They are now available for sale though logistics still need to be ironed out. I might have to find a reseller. The price is currently $2.40 Canadian each if bought by the case of 100. Obviously it will cost more selling in smaller quantities.